Harry exclaims, 'Sweet Father of Life - TUROK: SON OF STONE - Animated DVD is unbelievably fantastic!!!'
Published at: Jan. 21, 2008, 1:33 a.m. CST by headgeek
Hey folks - Harry here... Ya know... I really can't believe this. On Friday - I got sent 32 DVDs from all different companies to review. It was an unbelievable wave of materials that I was expected to get through - in addition to the regular pile of 6-9 dvds that arrive every day.
But one title jumped out at me... TUROK: SON OF STONE.
I was never a fan of the Valiant Comics reboot. I read the first 5 or so issues of it, but didn't get into it. I'm an old DELL comic TUROK reader. My father read them to me - I loved the idea of an Indian Dinosaur Fighter. It was just way cooler than just the typical prehistoric man... But when I flipped the box over - and I looked at the animation frames on the back... It looked like lame Saturday Morning Animation.
But dammit - I wanted to believe in this. They were basing it on the older comics - they got Adam Beach to be the voice of Turok. That's perfect.
So tonight - when I came home from the WEEKEND OF HORRORS - FANGORIA convention - I put all the screeners I got there into my pile... and I pulled out that Animated TUROK: SON OF STONE feature.
I honestly thought... I'll take it out in about 15 minutes.
I really did.
I put it in - and the WEINSTEIN COMPANY logo came up - and I thought... What the fuck? Why on Earth is this a Weinsten Company animated release - I picked up the DVD box again - saw that it had as one of the directors... Dan Riba, he's the guy behind a whole hell of a lot of the best episodes of the animated SUPERMAN, BATMAN BEYOND, JUSTICE LEAGUE and other episodes. Remember APOKOLIPS... NOW! two parter? Then there was Curt Geda - who directed the BATMAN BEYOND: RETURN OF THE JOKER video feature - and SUPERMAN: THE LAST SON OF KRYPTON. Then there was Frank Squillace - who hadn't really been anyone on my radar. But 2 out of 3 were looking pretty fucking sharp.
SO I settled back and watched.
It began with Turok as a teenager with his brother flirting with the girl of their desires - and there was this goofy chase and wrestling thing - and they get given the mission that whoever should return her totem that was swept down the river would get her. I'm rolling my eyes... until a hostile band of indians showed up - and suddenly the thing turns bloody fucking violent. I'm talking disemboweling and arms coming off and head wounds and I'm just sort of stunned - because the animation - while nicely designed... was very much Saturday Morning-esque. A few steps away from what I had hoped... but what it lacked in frames per second and effects animation... this thing made up in tone, character work, story and direction.
TUROK: SON OF STONE is an adult rendering of the classic 50s character. It is brutal, hardcore and graphic. Now - it skips copulating and juvenile sexual escapades (dammit) - but the story of mutual vengeance, tribal genocide and just the blood-letting and intensity of the violence was jaw-dropping because... man, I can't think of the last time blood flowed this freely in this style animation.
It was like Filmation with the balls to grow the fuck up.
A lot of Native American vocal talent went into this - and that attention to detail is welcomed here. Yet they're not talking like dumbed down White man parody characters. These characters have souls and histories and their respect intact.
The ENTIRE TIME I'M WATCHING THIS - I'm dreaming of a live-action version of this. Perhaps the Weinsteins are testing the grounds with this Animated telling. Maybe they're hoping to see a demonstration of an audience. Maybe, just maybe they'll show this to Robert Rodriguez and get him to make a film version as hard and four times as badass as this. If not Robert - I'd wet dream about Michael Mann... but he's never demonstrated he has the interest in fun stuff like dinosaurs. But gaddamn man... I dare you to watch this and not dream of a spectacularly large scale version of this.
I can't wait to show this to ol Father Geek tomorrow. And then next weekend... to my nephew. This is the sort of thing every good boy should see. Indians versus Dinosaurs... with their blood mingling in an unknown river of violence in a forgotten valley never seen or found by modern man! This is where Turok hunts, this cartoon has the spirit which Turok fought with. I'm so jazzed. Way to go - Everyone Responsible!!!